Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.
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Clement Of Rome
For thus hath the true prophet testified to its with an oath: `Verily I say to you, That unless a man is born again of water, he shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.
For thus the prophet has sworn to us, saying, "Verily I say to you, Unless ye be regenerated by living water into the name of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, you shall not enter the kingdom of heaven.
Jesus answered, &c. Calvin, in order to detract from the effect of justification by baptism, and therefore from the necessity of baptism (for he maintains that the children of believers are justified in the womb simply because they are the children of believers), denies that baptism is here spoken of. He says that by water is to be understood, but the Holy Ghost, who, through faith, cleanses like water those who believe in Christ. He explains as follows, "unless any one be born again of water, and (that Isaiah , of) the Holy Ghost." Thus he says it is similarly spoken (S. Matthew 3:11), He shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost and with fire, i.e, with the Holy Spirit, who, like fire, shall inflame you with the love of God. But all this is absurd and perverse, and condemned by the Church as heretical.
For, in the first place, why does Christ here make mention of water, if not men, but only fishes, are born again of water? Why did He not say briefly and simply to Nicodemus, who was ign...
Since it is written, "Except a man be born again of water, and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.".
And therefore it behoves those to be baptized who come from heresy to the Church, that so they who are prepared, in the lawful, and true, and only baptism of the holy Church, by divine regeneration, for the kingdom of God, may be born of both sacraments, because it is written, "Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.".
Also according to John: "Except a man be born of water, and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. For that which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.".
In the Gospel according to John: "Except a man be born again of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. For that which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.".
And in the Gospel our Lord Jesus Christ spoke with His divine voice, sayi...
Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the Kingdom of God.
Since the man did not understand as he ought, what the need of being born from above meant, He instructs him with plainer teaching, and sets before him the more open knowledge of the Mystery. For our Lord Jesus Christ was calling the new birth through the Spirit from above, shewing that the Spirit is of the Essence That is above all essences, through Whom we become partakers of the Divine Nature, as enjoying Him Who proceeds from It Essentially, and through Him and in Him re-formed to the Archetype-Beauty, and thus re-born unto newness of life, and re-moulded to the Divine Sonship. But Nicodemus not so understanding the word from above, imagined it was meant that the future birth should take place after the manner of bodies: therefore also falling into imaginations which shut him up in impossibility, he was caught alike senseless and hard of learning. Of necessity therefore does the Saviour ans...
How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter a second time into his mother's womb, and be born? Jesus answered,
Nicodemus is convicted hereby of being still carnal, and therefore no way receiving the things of the Spirit of God. For he thinketh that this so dread and illustrious Mystery is foolishness. And hearing of the birth spiritual and from above, he imagineth the carnal womb returning to birth-pang of things already born, and, not attaining beyond the law of |168 our nature, measureth things Divine; and finding the height of its doctrines unattainable by his own conceptions, he falleth down, and is carried off. For as things that are dashed by mighty blows upon the hard stones again rebound, so too I deem the unskilled mind falling upon conceptions of greater calibre than it, being relaxed returns, and ever glad to remain in the measure that suits it, despises an understanding better and loftier than itself. In which case the ruler of the Jews now being, receives not the...
Unless a man be born again of water, and the Holy Spirit. Though the word Holy be now wanting in all Greek copies, it is certainly the sense. The ancient Fathers, and particularly St. Augustine in divers places, from these words, prove the necessity of giving baptism to infants: and by Christ's adding water, is excluded a metaphorical baptism. See also Acts viii. 36. and x. 47. and Titus iii. 5. (Witham)
Except a man be born again. That is, unless you are born again by a spiritual regeneration in God, all the knowledge which you learn from me, will not be spiritual but carnal. But I say to you, that neither you nor any other person, unless you be born again in God, can understand or conceive the glory which is in me. (St. Chrysostom)
For as we are lepers in sin, we are made clean, by means of the sacred water and the invocation of the Lord, from our old transgressions; being spiritually regenerated as new-born babes, even as the Lord has declared: "Except a man be born again through water and the Spirit, he shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven."
1. Little children who go daily to their teachers receive their lessons, and repeat them, and never cease from this kind of acquisition, but sometimes employ nights as well as days, and this they are compelled to do for perishable and transient things. Now we do not ask of you who have come to age such toil as you require of your children; for not every day, but two days only in the week do we exhort you to hearken to our words, and only for a short portion of the day, that your task may be an easy one. For the same reason also we divide to you in small portions what is written in Scripture, that you may be able easily to receive and lay them up in the storehouses of your minds, and take such pains to remember them all, as to be able exactly to repeat them to others yourselves, unless any one be sleepy, and dull, and more idle than a little child.
Let us now attend to the sequel of what has been before said. When Nicodemus fell into error and wrested the words of Christ to the eart...
For, in the name of God, the Father and Lord of the universe, and of our Saviour Jesus Christ, and of the Holy Spirit, they then receive the washing with water. For Christ also said, "Except ye be born again, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.
Which comes to this result, that the Lord has taught us most plainly by them the liberty and power of the Holy Spirit, approaching of His own will, saying, "The Spirit breathes where He will; and thou hearest His voice, and knowest not whence He cometh or whither He goeth."
Besides, he had certainly not forgotten what the Lord had so definitively stated: "Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God; ".
When, however, the prescript is laid down that "without baptism, salvation is attainable by none "(chiefly on the ground of that declaration of the Lord, who says, "Unless one be born of water, he hath not life"